Job Description


This position is open for secondment only and participating States are kindly reminded that all costs in relation to an assignment at the Secretariat must be borne by their authorities. Seconded staff members in the OSCE Secretariat and Institutions are not entitled to a Board and Lodging Allowance payable by the Organization. Candidates should, prior to applying, verify with their respective nominating authority to which extent financial remuneration and/or benefit packages will be offered. Seconded staff members in the OSCE Secretariat and Institutions are not entitled to a Board and Lodging Allowance payable by the Organization.


The OSCE has a comprehensive approach to security that encompasses politico-military, economic and environmental, and human aspects. It therefore addresses a wide range of security-related concerns, including arms control, confidence- and security-building measures, human rights, national minorities, democratization, policing strategies, counter-terrorism and economic and environmental activities. All 57 participating States enjoy equal status, and decisions are taken by consensus on a politically, but not legally binding basis.


The OSCE Secretariat in Vienna assists the Chairpersonship in its activities, and provides operational and administrative  support to the Field Operations, and, as appropriate, to other institutions.


The Office of Legal Affairs provides legal services OSCE-wide with respect to public international law, financial and contractual matters, and legal issues related to the structure and activities of the OSCE. The Office also develops and strengthens the overall regulatory framework of the OSCE and advises on its implementation, including with respect to international civil service law.


The Office of Legal Affairs sits within the Office of the Secretary General (OSG), which in turn plays a key role in supporting the Secretary General in the effective implementation of his/her mandate and specific tasks given to him/her by the OSCE participating States. This includes primarily assisting the Secretary General in his/her activities, serving as a focal point for liaison and support to the Chairperson-in-Office, co-ordinating policy advice provided to the Secretary General and the Chairpersonship as well as management decisions taken by the Secretary General.


Tasks and Responsibilities

Under the general supervision of the Head, Office of Legal Affairs, the Legal Officer will support the work of Legal Affairs by providing general legal support and advice to OSCE field operations, as well as to OSCE Institutions in furtherance of their programmatic functions in Eastern Europe, the Caucasus, Central Asia, and the Western Balkans. Such support may also include advising the Chairpersonship and the Delegations on legal issues relating to the functions, structure and activities of the Organization.


Specifically, within the parameters described immediately above, the successful candidate will be tasked with the following duties:

  1. Providing legal advice on issues arising in relation to early conflict warning, Conflict Prevention, Crisis Management and post conflict rehabilitation, including by participating in task forces, particularly with respect to field operations;
  2. Providing legal advice on issues concerning the legal status and privileges and immunities of the OSCE and its officials in the field;
  3. Reviewing, providing legal advice in the negotiation and interpretation of legal instruments, such as agreements, memoranda of understanding, or other legal materials relevant to the work of the Organization;
  4. Providing legal advice on representation or procedure in the OSCE decision-making bodies;
  5. Providing legal advice on the elaboration, review, interpretation and application of the regulatory framework of the Organization, including Staff Regulations, Rules, Instructions, Financial Regulations and other administrative issuances;
  6. Providing legal advice in the negotiation or interpretation of contracts, such as for the lease of premises, as well as on issues concerning intellectual property rights and insurance;
  7. Providing legal advice on dispute resolution, including by examining claims by or against the Organization, its field operations, and its officials;
  8. Performing extensive legal research and Analysis for the preparation of legal opinions, studies, reports or correspondence;
  9. Performing other related duties as required.


For more detailed information on the structure and work of the OSCE Secretariat, please see:


Necessary Qualifications

  • First-level university degree in law with a background in public international law;
  • A minimum of six years of relevant professional experience, including a minimum of two years with a governmental Administration or international organization;
  • Excellent interpersonal and analytical skills;
  • Professional fluency in English, with excellent oral and drafting skills; knowledge of other OSCE working languages is desirable;
  • Demonstrated gender awareness and sensitivity, and ability to integrate a Gender Perspective into tasks and activities;
  • Ability and willingness to work as a member of a team, with people of different cultural and religious backgrounds, different gender, and diverse political views, while maintaining impartiality and objectivity;
  • Ability to operate Windows applications including word processing, internet and other Software Applications.


The OSCE is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages the nomination of qualified female and male candidates from all national, religious, ethnic and social backgrounds.

Candidates should be aware that OSCE officials shall conduct themselves at all times in a manner befitting the status of an international civil servant. This includes avoiding any action which may adversely reflect on the integrity, independence and impartiality of their position and function as officials of the OSCE. The OSCE is committed to applying the highest ethical standards in carrying out its mandate. For more information on the values set out in OSCE Competency Model, please see

Candidates should, prior to applying, verify with their respective nominating authority to which extent financial remuneration and/or benefit packages will be offered. 

Please apply to your relevant authorities well in advance of the deadline expiration to ensure timely processing of your application. Delayed nominations will not be considered. The OSCE can only process Secondment applications that have been nominated by participating States. For queries relating to your application, please refer to the respective delegation as listed here:

Additional Information
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